Does the lung/breathing problem continue throughout the day when you have a nighttime episode? If reflux is getting into your lungs, then you'd be coughing more throughout the day in response. If it's just a momentary problem that goes away as soon as it resolves, I don't think it is actual reflux going into your lungs.
I have the problem of things going down the wrong way sometimes. Joy provided some great information about that. If you tuck your chin and bend your head forward when you swallow it can help keep the flap closed. I've been using that technique when I'm on the treadmill and I want to take a drink. I was getting some in my lungs and it would make me cough, but using that technique it really helps a lot.
Is there anywhere besides your small town that you could travel to seek medical help? It sounds as if that would be a good option for you. You have enough issues that you ought to get some medical advice and care.
Words of wisdom by Eckhart Tolle:
"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”
“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”
“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”